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How to do a Handstand

By Edited Oct 10, 2016 1 2

Learn how to do a handstand

handstand (32854)

Doing a handstand is not something that is overly complicated. There are a few tricks though, that will help you get past a couple fairly formidable feeling barriers

For starters; Getting Inverted. The first challenge is of course actually getting up side down enough to be able to stay there for any length of time. Most people, when they are starting, will plant their hands, flail their legs up behind them but quickly come back to earth, and not entirely gracefully either. To do a handstand one must get your balance at the point where you are just about to topple over backwards, and this is scary and takes time to perfect One would do well to find a motivational coach/friend to yell "YOU'RE NOT UPSIDE-DOWN ENOUGH!". Anything that works for you really.

The next difficultly that one generally comes up against is the fear of falling, mentioned previously. By doing a handstand you are putting yourself in a pretty precarious position, and if you start flipping over backwards or your arms give out; you're going to eat it. So to prevent that you must learn how to bail, to roll out of it. Now, when you are inverted upon your hands and you feel the cold clutches of gravity pulling you down, tuck your chin to your chest, tail between your legs, round your back and do a somersault. crisis averted.

Once you have managed to find that sweet spot of balance, and you can feel it, the trick is to stay there. Not so easy. To maintain your precarious upended position; move your hands, constantly, like on stilts. This will be very hard to do in the beginning but with time you will improve. When you get your first steps you will probably be peddling backwards at a furious rate. This is obviously because you center of gravity is just a titch too far back. Take the necessary steps to correct it. After some time you will be able to stay in place fairly well, shifting weight from one arm to the other taking baby steps.

Two things you can do from here; walk forward, or stay still. Both tremendous accomplishments. Walking forward requires fairly decent control over balance and is sufficiently cool to be considered a real skill, especially if you can outrun the people trying to push you over. Quite a sight. Staying still is also something to be fathomed, it requires very excellent fine motor control and is even more impressive when you can do planet pushups.

And then that's it! you can do handstands! I'm sure it will have come as a surprise to you! Other things to note for learning are practicing with someone holding your legs or starting against a wall. Then there is the...

Super Bonus Trick

Go into a headstand and press up into a handstand, and don't fall over. Dubbed the World Lifter.



Nov 19, 2010 8:08pm
This is good information. This is a skill I have always wanted to learn to do. Before I get too old, I need to start practicing this.

Do you find it easier to do with the legs straight, or bent at the knees almost to 90 degrees? I see a lot of people do it with the legs bent, but the circus guys do it with the legs straight. I assume straight is harder.
Nov 25, 2010 10:20am
I have seen performers do both, but obviously straight legs have the added aesthetic appeal. I personally find straight leg more comfortable but wouldn't say there is a particular difference of difficulty between the two. If you have ever tried to balance a broom on your hand of chin you will find that a taller broom is easier to balance. Whether the exact same rules apply to handstands I am unsure
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